Ratifying the Constitution

Posted: July 1st, 2022

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To complete Analytical Essay – Ratifying the Constitution, please make sure to follow the steps identified and explained below:
Step One: Be sure you have read Chapter 6 in your textbook (Shi) secondary source – specifically sections discussing the strengths and weaknesses of the Articles of Confederation, the Constitutional Convention, constitutional compromises, civil liberties (Bill of Rights), the issue of slavery and the Constitution, and the ratification debates.

Step Two: Take a few minutes to watch these video clips.
(NOTE: Information in these videos are to provide broad overviews of the key topic(s) related to the essay prompt. Students should use the Shi textbook as the main secondary source cited in the essay. Do not use the videos as secondary source material cited in the essay).
A New Federal Constitution (1787) (Links to an external site.)
The Constitutional Compromises (Links to an external site.)
The Constitutional Compromises
Constitutional Compromises: Crash Course Government and Politics #5 (Links to an external site.)
Constitutional Compromises: Crash Course Government and Politics #5
Ratification of the Constitution (Links to an external site.)

Step Three: Please read and analyze the primary sources concerning the constitutional ratification debate in the Analytical Essay – Ratifying Constitution – Primary Sources Packet (HIS 121).pdf Download Analytical Essay – Ratifying Constitution – Primary Sources Packet (HIS 121).pdfdocument.
Students should use these sources, along with secondary source information from the textbook (Shi), to support their major ideas, arguments, and conclusions. Appropriate primary source use is required for essay assignments.

Step Four: In a three (3) page essay, address the following prompt:
Briefly discuss some strengths and weaknesses of the Articles of Confederation and explain why some felt it needed to be revised. Next, identify and discuss at least two major debates and compromises made at the Constitutional Convention and discuss the powers of the federal government under the new Constitution. Did these powers increase? Decrease? How so? Lastly, assume the position of a Virginia delegate who must determine whether to ratify or reject the new Constitution in 1788. Would you vote for ratification or rejection? Provide at least two reasons for your decision and defend them using primary source evidence and analysis.

NOTE: Essay format is as follows: Full Name, Course Section – inserted into the top, left corner; Font – Times New Roman, 12 Point; Spacing – Double Spaced. Essays should be uploaded in either a .doc, .docx., or a .pdf file format.
NOTE: Students must use both primary and secondary sources (provided primary source packet and textbook) to support/defend their major points and arguments (both quotes and paraphrased ideas – quote from primary sources; paraphrase from secondary sources). These sources must be cited appropriately using the Chicago Author-Date Style of in-text citations (a bibliography is not required).
NOTE: Students are not permitted to use outside sources. Only course materials are permitted as viable sources – primary source PDF packets and secondary source textbooks.

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